An ESL Booklet—For Effective Pair Work Activities—Ready to Print

If you are like thousands of other ESL/EFL/ELT teachers around the world, you may have a manual, but chances are you are left on your own to find effective teaching materials suited to your students. The Internet is filled with great resources, but where do you turn first? And how can you manage to appear well prepared facing your students, when you have so many students and so little time?

Back to the Basics Volume 1: Pair Work Activities

At QualityTime-ESL we have prepared a set of files entitled "Back to the Basics Volume 1: Pair Work Activities”. They are not for real beginners but rather for learners who have studied English for at least two years at school but still have problems speaking English. They will help students to improve and above all enable them to "master the basics"—and void making inexcusable mistakes. In other words, these exercises are well adapted to all students from A2 to C1 levels.

Eighteen different activities

There are eighteen different activities you can have your students do in class (or as assignments). Moreover, you can photocopy these documents recto-verso and bind them together thus producing a nice, neat 25-page booklet filled with pair work exercises that always give great results! The activities have been tested for years. Photocopying costs about two cents a page in black and white, so the whole booklet with a cover in color (preferably made out of stronger paper) will cost less than sixty cents for each student. These exercises represent many hours of lively, enjoyable oral work for your students. They will be speaking English all the time—provided of course you use the intensive pair work techniques that are suggested on page 2 in the booklet.

The cost of the complete pack of files with all the keys is €1.99.

To purchase the booklet pack go to the store or directly to Back to the Basics (downloadable booklet)


The keys are provided for all the exercises that require them and so is extra advice on how to use each exercise. Keys can be printed up to make up an additional “Key Booklet”. Or you can bring copies of the keys to class, as you need them. You will only be “lending out” the keys to the students, so you will need a number representing only half the number of students in your most numerous class.

Customizing your booklets

Most of the files are in MS Word, so if you want to add notes or translations into your students’ native language or simply your name, you can do so without difficulty. You can change the layout or the font, but please keep the indication “QualityTime-ESL” as often as possible. This will incite students to come to our website where they will find free oral drills that are very effective cf. "QualityTime-ESL Podcasts" and. “Your English”.

The exercises in this first volume can easily be combined with others you have planned. They can be extra “speaking” exercises or can form the basis of your study plan. You can use them over a certain number of weeks or spread them out over the year.

Description of the Booklet

  • Cover (to be personalized)
  • Table of contents
  • Pair Work Correcting Instructions
  • Basic Numbers - Student Page & Basic Numbers - Teacher Page
  • Spell to Partner “A” & Spell to Partner “B”
  • Geography Quiz
  • Nationalities
  • Numbers Dictation Chart
  • Make & Do Poems (3) with Worksheets
  • A Chart for Verb Tenses
  • Review of Tenses (Exercises 1-6)
  • Extra Make & Do Quiz
  • Oral Test No. 1
  • Page for Note-Taking (To use with Oral Test No. 1)
  • Assignments
  • Annex: A Short Guide to Verb Tenses in English
  • Back cover: Language for Pair Work Correcting

A few sample Pages from the Booklet


PDF - 42 kb
0A Cover


PDF - 86 kb
1 Contents

Number exercise:

Here you can see the page with the exercise. There is also page with the key (with all the numbers written out in full) intended for the partner, who is playing the role of "teacher".

PDF - 46.4 kb
3 Numbers-Student

Spelling exercise:

Each student has a page like this one and spells the lines to his or her partner. The document is in MS Word so you can type in the exact lines YOU want your students to spell in class.

PDF - 87.6 kb
5 Spell to Partner "A"

Final word

One thing is certain: Students will appreciate having their own personalized booklet with their names on it and yours too. And the booklet will save you a lot of time!

To purchase the booklet pack go to the store or directly to Back to the Basics (downloadable booklet)

Best wishes from Marianne

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